Hello again all,
As far as a life update goes from me this week, I'm afraid I don't have much of one. I finished off my second-to-last semester of High School, and spent a lot of time throwing together papers and projects at last minute. As easy and rewarding as it can be to stay organized with work you love, it's pretty hard to commit yourself fully to things you don't value. And I'd be hard pressed to describe high school more aptly right now - I can't wait to be done with it.
Enough of that though, with a new semester starting next week I should have more than enough time to write something good for you guys in the coming days. Or at least, that's the plan.
As always, I've found some varied links this week from around the web for you all to enjoy. This edition has tripods, coffee, video games with cancerous backstories, and incredible Star Wars VFX all in store - dig in 🙂✌
I hope they're good fun to read through, and as always - thank you for reading along with me. I'll see you all next week.
The Manfrotto 209 + 492 Long Tabletop Tripod Kit — Tools and Toys - Àlvaro Serrano's first Tools & Toys review for 2016 hit this week, and ooh man did this one have me hovering over that Amazon buy button. The Manfrotto tripod bundle that Àlvaro reps in his review seems like some serious gear and a serious good deal. His writing and photography are again spectacular, and I enjoyed getting to see little bits of his recent travels sprinkled throughout the review. A successful start to 2016 for Àlvaro - Cheers friend!
"The Last Game I Make Before I Die" - The Story of 'Crashlands', Cancer and Leaving a Legacy - TouchArcade - Crashlands is an absolutely stellar Action-RPG which debuted on iOS this past week - and I can't get enough of it. I've spent far too many hours already playing it, and my appreciation for this combination of quality software & game design only increased upon hearing the game's back story. Crashlands' development is mired in Sam's - one of the three Coster brothers that make up Butterscotch Shenanigans - serious fight with a bout of cancer, and aside from how much more touching the game becomes after reading through this piece, knowing this makes me appreciate Crashlands all the more. The game has experienced critical and popular success in it's first week or so since release, and I'm happy that Sam & the rest of Butterscotch Shenanigans got to bring so many people joy. Read the piece and check out the game, they're both well worth your time.
The Dao of the Shell - Matt Gemmell - Matt Gemmell punctuated my week with a wonderfully nerdy and conceptual post on how sometimes the most complex solutions can end up being the most simple. His case in point is an email client built on top of OS X's terminal - complete with just enough features, plentiful customization, and little else. Im totally on board with Matt's points here, and I wish I could implement the same thing he has here on my iOS devices. In some ways this reminds me of my Launch Center/Workflow Caffeine Tracker - which was complex in setup but simple in practice. I think that's what Matt's on about here, and it's worth a read for the concept alone if not for the nerdery.
New Plan(ners) for 2016 — Three Staples - Jinnie from Three Staples is back this week with an update on how she's decided to use her various notebooks in 2016. Jinnie's system features a lot of different books for different applications and contexts. The way I work is far more simple, to each their own. Looking at Jinnie's gorgeous Hobonichi Techo and A5 notebooks is seriously tempting my stationary itch, but for now I'm keeping my system simple. We'll see if it stays that way in the long run.
Coffee At The Movies: The Revenant - Sprudge - In a new series from the coffee news site Sprudge, Eric Grimm takes a look at a current theatrical release, all while sneaking in some coffee-nerd descriptions to go along with the quality coffee he snuck into the theater. I'm not a fan of Leo so I didn't see The Revenant, and judging from this review and some other snippets that I've seen online - it doesn't seem like I was wrong in skipping it. Regardless, this is a promising new start for a movie-review/coffee-nerd series. I'm digging it.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens - Exclusive Breakdown Edit - A quick, cool link that came through my Twitter timeline this week; this is a behind the scenes video that shows some of the CGI compositions in Star Wars: The Force Awakens - and it's pretty incredible. Not only do you see the scenes as layers of detail and lighting are layered on top, but you can actually see as parts of the environment get fleshed out, morph, and contort themselves into what you see in the film. It's really incredible the kinds of tools that these filmmakers were working with, and it's a testament to how good a job they did that I never would've known how digital-based many of these scenes are.